News > Brentwood Heads for Rainbows - 20/01/2016

Brentwood Heads for Rainbows - 20/01/2016


The Diocese of Brentwood held its annual Head teachers conference in October with Rainbows Bereavement Support being represented both days by Derek Kelly, Registered Director for training. Derek met with both the head teachers of Rainbows Schools in the Diocese and also attracted numerous enquiries from schools who have not as yet been trained. One such enquiry has already completed its training with Rainbows being used in the school and others are in the process. The heads of existing Rainbows schools have become very eager promoters of the benefits of Rainbows amongst their peers.

Gael Hicks, Headteacher of St Helen’s Catholic Primary School, Newham, who has been running the Rainbows

Programme for the past 6 years in her school said,

“Rainbows has supported many children in our school through the stages of grieving; given them time and space in the busyness of home and school; allowed them time to ask questions and expresses their emotions and enabled them to laugh, smile and continue to love those who have died. It is wonderful to see the caring relationship that develops between children.”

 Annabelle Smith, Headteacher of St George’s Catholic Primary School, Shoeburyness, was keen to explain that, “Rainbows has become an integral part of the holistic care for the children of St George’s. Around ten per cent of our children have been part of the programme and the impact has been huge. Some children found the initial sessions challenging, however, this was quickly replaced with excitement, engagement and a sense that they finally had the opportunity to share their anxieties and feeling in a safe, non-judgmental way. I have received so many comments from staff and parents of our Rainbows children; all of them saying the same thing, ’Rainbows made all the difference.’ However, the greatest compliments came from the children themselves, ‘I love Rainbows and can’t wait for next week’.”


Pictured (left to right) Annabelle Smith,Derek Kelly & Gael Hicks

The conference opening guest speaker, Michael Holman SJ, Principal of Heythrop College (pictured below) recognised the importance the work of Rainbows and in his speech regarding the Year of Mercy specifically mentioned the benefits of timely interventions in case of bereavement of which Rainbows Bereavement Support is an important agent.